15 January 2013

South Africa: Health Facilities to Remain Closed During Farm Worker Strike

press release

Western Cape Government Health has, after consultation with local authorities closed the following facilities (clinics) in the areas affected by the farm worker strikes:

DeDoorns area:

Orchard, Sandhills and De Doorns clinics will remain closed until further notice

Community Based Carers were unable to deliver services to-day

Worcester area:

Community Based Care were unable to deliver services in the Avian Park area

Ceres area:

Wolseley Clinic remains closed

Services in other affected areas have not been interrupted.

Western Cape Minister of Health, Theuns Botha, says: "It is disappointing that we have to close down our health services and deprive people that are dependent on our health services. We cannot afford to put our health workers who work at these clinics at risk, and so are forced to close the clinics.

"It is quite ironic to think that the issues at stake for farm workers are about human dignity but at the same time the situation is depriving our patients of a basic right, as set out in the constitution - the right to health services. There are so many options available to voice concerns. I hope the situation normalises soon so that all people in the Winelands can have access to health services again."

Patients requiring emergency treatment are encouraged to make use of Emergency Medical Services by phoning for assistance on 10177.

Western Cape Government Health urges members of the public to allow health staff safe passage to clinics thus enabling patients who require acute or chronic care and medication to access these services at their usual facility. The department would like to remind parents that it is the time of year when children are particularly vulnerable to contracting diarrhoeal diseases. Parents of young children should seek immediate medical attention if their young child is vomiting and suffering from diarrhoea.

Western Cape Government Health apologises to their patients for the unavoidable interruption of services.

Issued by: Western Cape Health

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